Ramallah- Palestinian official figures have shown that illiteracy rates in Palestine a
re among the lowest in the world.
The Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) said in a report published Thursday that the illiteracy rate stood at 3.1 percent in 2016, which means that about 90,000 persons over 15 years of age are currently classified as illiterate.
On the occasion of the International Literacy Day, which falls on September 8, PCBS President Ula Awad said that illiteracy rate in Palestine dropped from 13.9 percent in 1997 to 3.1 percent in 2016, which is one of the lowest in the world.
Broken down by gender, illiteracy rate among males dropped from 7.8 percent in 1997 to 1.4 percent in 2016, while for females it fell from 20.3 percent to 4.8 percent, the report said.
The distribution of illiterates varies among age groups, with the group of people aged 65 years and over have registered the highest illiteracy rate, while the age groups 15-29 and 30-44 years have the lowest percentages.
Broken down by region, illiteracy rate among persons 15 years and above in Palestine was 3.2 percent in the West Bank (59,900 illiterates) and 2.8 percent in Gaza Strip (30,000 illiterates).
Statistics have shown that the illiteracy rate in rural communities was higher than in other societies, as it reached 4.4 per cent (23.3 thousand illiterates), while the percentage was 3.0 in camps (8.5 thousand illiterates) and 2.8 in urban communities (158,000 illiterates) in 2016.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) defines the illiterate person as the person who cannot read and write a simple sentence about his daily life.